It is very important to maintain a positive mental attitude during a job search so that you project a positive image to others. However, it’s not always easy to do. Remember the mantra “it’s okay to visit Pity City, but it’s not okay to live there”. So how do you keep your trips to Pity City to a minimum?
Following some of these techniques might help.
- Volunteer. It doesn’t matter if it’s personal (e.g., church, Big Brothers/Big Sisters) or professional (e.g., Volunteer Center of NW Suburban Chicago at http://www.volunteerinfo.net; Taproot Foundation at http://www.taprootfoundation.org; job support organizations discussed last time). The point is to focus on helping others rather than feeling sorry for yourself. If you are concerned about your ability to keep the commitment after you start a new job, talk to them about it before you sign on. Another benefit of volunteering is that this is one more avenue for you to possibly meet an important job contact.
- Maintain good health. Take care of yourself by eating a healthy diet and engaging in regular exercise.
- Structure your day and stay focused. Get up at the same time, have a designated workspace for your job search.
- Get out of the house every day. Most jobs are found through the hidden job market, not on the computer.
- Be forgiving. Many people want to help however, there are also those who either don’t follow through or who have no interest in helping at all. When you come across those people, accept their lack of response and move on.
- Limit exposure to news and television. The news is overwhelmingly bad. In order to avoid those negative vibes, get your news online so you can stay in the know but also control the input.
- Celebrate victories along the way. Recognize when you have done good work and take a moment to bask in your success, no matter how small.
- Change your self-talk – the things you say in your head about your worth and value. Actively listen to those messages and change them when they are self defeating. Each day you have a choice about how you feel and you should choose to be positive.
- Have fun. You may feel as though you don’t deserve to have fun because you lost your job. This is ridiculous. Not only is it okay, it’s essential to your well-being.
Your ultimate goal is to be re-employed. It will be much more difficult to achieve that goal if you are negative. No one enjoys being around negative people. Likewise, employers don’t want to hire someone who is negative. You have a choice so choose to be positive.
Next time we will look at low or no cost activities in the Chicago-land area where you can have fun without breaking the bank.